Napoli may have found a suitable alternative to Faouzi Ghoulam in Zenit St Petersburg's defender Domenico Criscito.
The Serie A leaders have been forced to do without Ghoulam since the Egyptian picked up a cruciate knee ligament injury earlier this month, during Napoli's 4-2 Champions League defeat to Manchester City.
Azzurri boss Maurizio Sarri has, since then, been forced to employ loanee Mario Rui, or alternatively, the duo Christian Maggio on the left side of the defence, but is looking for a more stable solution.
According to Napoli newspaper Il Mattino, they have eyed, and are close to securing, Italian Domenico Criscito, whose contract is set to expire soon.
The Serie A giants have started negotiations with Criscito's agent, who claimed that Napoli gave him the impression of needing to buy new players in January.
He also said that contract talks are currently being held with Zenit officials, but no agreement has been reached so far.
He told Il Mattino (via Napoli Sport): "It's unlikely that he will leave in January, but there are already many clubs interested in him.
"We still haven't figured out whether Zenit mean to let him go or keep him in Russia until the end of the season."
For eight years Criscito was co-owned by Juventus and Genoa, for whom he played in alternate years between 2003 and 2011. However, more recently he has become one of the stars of the Russian league.